Stevie Wonder says that he gets a kidney transplanted in the fall



LONDON – Stevie Wonder surprised concert fans in London on Saturday night by announcing that he was going to take a break so he could get a kidney transplant this fall.

The 69-year-old music legend announced this news after performing "Superstition" at the end of a packed British Summer Time concert in Hyde Park, London.

He said he was talking to quell the rumors and sought to reassure the fans that he would be fine.

"I'll do three shows and then take a break," he said. "I'm going to have surgery, I'm going to have a kidney transplant at the end of September this year."

He added that a donor had been found and that he would be fine, attracting the applause of a dedicated crowd of tens of thousands of people, who had been expanding as far as the eye could see since the scene.

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Stevie Wonder and Aretha Franklin together

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146027 08: (NO NEWSWEEK – NO USNEWS) Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin, Michael Jackson and Diana Ross are standing in front of the Lincoln Memorial on January 17, 1993, in Washington, DC. Many musicians and artists gathered in front of the memorial to celebrate President Bill Clinton's inauguration. (Photo by Cynthia Johnson / Liaison)

Aretha Franklin and Stevie Wonder at the 2006 Trumpet Awards ceremony at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, Georgia (USA). (Photo by Moses Robinson / WireImage)

PASADENA, CA – SEPTEMBER 07: Singers Aretha Franklin (left) and Stevie Wonder perform on stage at Soul Soul's 10th Annual Soul of Lady Soul Annual Ceremony, held in the Civic Auditorium. from Pasadena on September 7, 2005 in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter / Getty Images)

PASADENA, CA – SEPTEMBER 07: The singers Aretha Franklin (left) and Stevie Wonder on stage at the 10th annual Soul of Soul Soul ceremony held at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium on September 7, 2005 in Pasadena, California . (Photo by Kevin Winter / Getty Images)

Singers Aretha Franklin and Stevie Wonder play together at the finale of VH1's "Divas Live: The Unique and Unique Aretha Franklin," a live televised concert at Radio City Music Hall in New York on April 10, 2001 .

Musicians Aretha Franklin and Stevie Wonder sing together at BET Honors in Washington on January 14, 2012. REUTERS / Joshua Roberts (USA – Tags: ENTERTAINMENT)

WASHINGTON, DC – JANUARY 13: Stevie Wonder and Aretha Franklin attend the 2012 BET Honors Pre-Award Dinner at the Corcoran Gallery of Art on January 13, 2012 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Paul Morigi / WireImage)




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"I came here to give you my love and thank you for yours," he said. "You will not hear any rumors about us, I'm fine."

He did not provide any additional information about his kidney disease. According to a recent report, Wonder was facing a serious health problem.

A Wonder representative did not immediately respond to a request for details regarding his state of health on Saturday. He kept an active schedule, including at a commemorative ceremony in Los Angeles for the murdered rapper Nipsey Hussle.

Wonder, who has received more than two dozen Grammy Awards, has produced a series of successes over a long career that began when he was a young actor portrayed by Little Stevie Wonder. Among his classic hits are "You're the sun of my life" and "Living for the city".

Wonder seemed in great shape throughout the concert, performing a series of his hits and paying tribute to musical heroes such as Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye and John Lennon. He played a moving rendition of "Imagine" by the latter towards the end of the show.

His fans were thrilled by the warm summer night – though a slight drizzle fell by the end – and by the career-wide retrospective that evoked Wonder's debut as a young Motown star .

He seemed less emotive than in the past and announced his state of health in a dark tone with a stern look. But he smiled as he left the stage with the group playing the memorable conclusion of "Superstition" one last time.

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Stevie Wonder at the Global Citizen Festival

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NEW YORK, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 23: Stevie Wonder and Kwame Morris perform on stage during the 2017 Citizen Global Festival: For Freedom. For justice. For everyone. in Central Park to end extreme poverty by 2030 at Central Park on September 23, 2017 in New York. (Photo by Kevin Mazur / Getty Images for Global Citizen)

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 23: Pharrell Williams and Stevie Wonder perform on stage at the 2017 World Citizen Festival: For Freedom. For justice. For everyone. in Central Park to end extreme poverty by 2030 at Central Park on September 23, 2017 in New York. (Photo by Kevin Mazur / Getty Images for Global Citizen)

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 23: Stevie Wonder performs on stage during the 2017 Citizen Global Festival: For Freedom. For justice. For everyone. in Central Park to end extreme poverty by 2030 at Central Park on September 23, 2017 in New York. (Photo by Kevin Mazur / Getty Images for Global Citizen)

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 23: Stevie Wonder and Kwame Morris perform on stage during the 2017 Citizen Global Festival: For Freedom. For justice. For everyone. in Central Park to end extreme poverty by 2030 at Central Park on September 23, 2017 in New York. (Photo by Kevin Mazur / Getty Images for Global Citizen)




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Associated Press television writer Lynn Elber in Los Angeles contributed.


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